About 18% of women, and 6% of men, suffer from migraine. This illness is more common than diabetes and asthma combined, and comes in many different, complex forms. Just as we did with the types of Bipolar Disorder last week, we hope to give an overview of the ways in which migraines can present themselves.
As with the Bipolar post, this is not meant as a diagnostic tool. If you are suffering from symptoms that you believe to be migraines, talk to your doctor.
There are two “main” categories of migraine: with aura and without aura. An “aura” is a set of symptoms that starts shortly before the migraine, and lasts until the migraine begins or a little afterwards. These symptoms can include visual disturbances, numbness, weakness, nausea, tingling, or confusion.
Migraines themselves, as well as the headaches, can include a variety of symptoms including nausea, blurred vision, confusion, and fatigue.
However, there is another, more rare type of migraine called migraine without headache, in which these other symptoms are present without the headache. The most common symptoms of a migraine without headache are disturbances in vision and nausea, which can lead to vomiting. However, there are many symptoms and experiences–located all over the body–that may technically be the result of migraines, even if you don’t feel any headaches.
A chronic migraine can be diagnosed if you experience migraine symptoms for more than 15 days every month for three months. Chronic migraine is often debilitating and is most commonly treated with preventative medication.